Malva sylvestris | Common Mallow ‘Mystic Merlin’
Mallows are one of the most notable and important plant families in the world. They make wonderful ornamental garden plants, and are also widely cultivated as herbs or for food. There are over 1000 species of mallows, and although most of them are tropical, many are suitable as perennial ornamentals in temperate gardens.
Common Mallow, also known as French Hollyhock and High Mallow, is a long-flowering, semi-herbaceous, hardy perennial that’s easy to grow, drought tolerant, and requires little care. ‘Mystic Merlin’ plants produce masses of 2″ blooms in varying colors, which can include violets, purples, mauve, and magenta, summer through fall. Stretches to 4-6′ tall x 4′ wide!
Sow indoor, or outdoors after last frost. Does best in full sun to light shade, tolerates most soils, grows in gravel, and is commonly found growing next to cement patios or landscaping bricks. Reseeds easily, but is not invasive. Hardy as can be. Great cottage garden plant.
Most parts of this plant are edible. The leaves are edible raw… young leaves are more tender and less bitter than older leaves. Young shoots are edible raw. Leaves are suitable as a soup thickener. Seeds are edible raw and have a palatable, nut-like flavor. Flower buds and flowers are also edible.
Mallows attract butterflies, beneficial insects and hummingbirds.
Sun exposure: Full sun to part shade
Mature height: 4- 6 ft
Mature width: 3-4 ft
Hardiness zones: 4- 8